In this case (and rather late in the season for the Pacific Northwest), I happened to be at Home Depot and noticed a few 8X10 Arrow metal sheds on a clear-out for just a couple of hundred bucks.
On a whim, and with no prior planning to do so, I picked one up with the intention of turning it into an observatory similar to the ones I’d seen here on CN.
Now, over the years I’ve made about 500 different excuses to myself why I shouldn’t build an observatory in my back yard. Those excuses have ranged from the (true) fact that there’s too many trees blocking my Eastern and South Eastern view, that it rains too much here in the Pacific Northwest, that it would take up too much space in my yard (even though I don’t use the space for anything!), and a bunch of other excuses that, frankly, have prevented me from building an observatory since I moved into this house 12 years ago.
No longer. I had purchased the Arrow shed and was on my way.
Some parameters I’d established for myself ahead of time were:
1) I’d be working by myself, and couldn’t count on having a second pair of hands available.
2) I wanted the observatory to be practical, but also was painfully aware that I was definitely NOT an experienced carpenter.
3) I decided up front that I wasn’t going to play around endlessly with trying to waterproof the roll-off roof, so decided up front to put a secondary cover on it.
4) I also decided I wasn’t into concrete at all, and would build the platform for the shed from wood, and the pier from 4 pressure treated 4X4’s.
5) I realized that, because of how late in the fall it is, once I started I’d pretty much have to finish quickly if I wanted it to a “lock-up” stage before endless days and months of rain.
I'm writing this after the building is to “lock-up”, but before the telescope is mounted on the pier. There are many elements still to complete, and here in the Pacific Northwest, the endless rain of winter has definitely descended upon us. The bonus is that with my Mr. Heater in the observatory, I can continue to work inside in a warm and dry space.
I sunk the 8X8 pier in 7 bags of Post Haste concrete, let it set for a few days, and then began building a simple deck around the pier, on which would sit the Arrow shed.